It has been a minute since I stepped foot into a classroom...20 years as a matter of fact! So the cost of back to school shopping has never really crossed my mind since then. A lot has changed since then. Kids now have to have calculators that can tell you the distance in from Earth to Mars and the "trajectory" (is that the right word?!?) between the two in order to get there. Long gone are the days of "Scott has six apples and Angela eats two...". And what is this "new math" I hear people talking about?
This season Altrusa of Gadsden choose to sponsor a family in need of a little help to provide them with the supplies they would need for the coming year. Four children all together, one going into the 6th, 5th and 4th grades, and a little 2 year old also. Of course, they still needed the basic pens and paper, crayons and markers, and school wouldn't be school with out a three ring binder. But now they have to have clear back packs and can't have a Trapper Keeper!?!?! Nor did I see a single Lisa Frank anything!?!?!
Our day started meeting at Wal-Mart at 7 A.M. Now, I am no means a morning person. I typically enjoy getting up around 9 and then trying to sneak in a nap or so before going to work at 2. However, I have to admit, the best time to go back to school shopping is 7 A.M. There was hardly a soul there and we were able to divide and conquer to get all the things these kids would need. After we finished the school supplies, we got each child three outfits each along with other basic needs. After an hour of shopping we headed to self check out with three carts full....which was probably not the greatest idea because we would manage to swipe three items before the register yelled at us for something. We gave the cashier in that area a work out that day for sure. Finally managing to ring everything up, we still were able to come out under budget!!
Next it was time to load everything up into Becky Potter's car...which she specifically bought with trunk space in mind. It was a good thing too, because we filled it up! Then all the supplies were brought to Scott Browning's house to sort and and fill back packs with the required supplies so that each child will be ready to go. There will be no need for the last minute "Mom I can't find my..." on that early August morning as she tries to get all kids out the door and into school on time! Clothes are folded neatly and ready to go. All that is left is a trip to the shoe store this week and our mission will be complete!
It is a heart warming feeling to know that we are able to take the stress of all this off of at least one family this year. This makes all the hard work of what we do feel worth it. It is through things such as our 2nd Annual Home, Garden and Design Show and our 1st Annual Santa's Workshop that we are able to raise the funds needed for these types of things. Our volunteerism, the hours we give up from our own lives, that go into making these things happen. And we look forward to doing it each and every year!
Summer in the South....the sweet iced tea flows, the days are hot and thick with humidity, cicadas sing their prayers for rain, and the passing afternoon thunderstorm rolls through offering a brief moment of relief from the days heat. Nothing else is like it and nothing can beat it...unless of course you are spending summer in Hawaii! Sadly for us Altrusans, we stay so busy that is sometimes hard to escape the Southern Summer. So at this months meeting we brought Hawaii to Gadsden with a luau party instead. Okay, so maybe it isn't Honolulu, but it was definitely a nice break!
Every two years, Altrusans vote for an incoming President for the club. It is their job to over see the activities of the club, plan and execute an Operational Budget for the year, and to also review and update the Club Policies. These policies help members understand the direction that the President wishes to move the club during their tenor and overall principles for members. Members then review the Club Policies and then vote to accept these. This month, we voted and accept the new Club Policies as proposed by our President Angela Walker and you can review these here. The changes made were not drastic on any part, but they do help bring the cub into a newer area that where we were.
Welcome Member Jeri Timm!!
Once again, we are excited to announce the joining of a new member to Altrusa of Gadsden! This month, we welcome Jeri Timm to our Club. Jeri is a transplant to Gadsden and is the owner and manager of the UPS Store on George Wallace Drive along with her father. We met Jeri there while we were working on our Women's Day Out Show and she volunteered her time and talents to help us with many aspects of the event. We are so excited to have her join our club and look forward to her ideas and creativity.
While we are speaking of new members, please remember that August is our friends and family night! So, if you know of anyone who might be interested in membership, feel free to bring them next month. We promise an evening of fun, fellowship, and food! Scott Browning will be calling bingo again this year, so there will be lots of corny jokes for everyone! Please let Angela Walker know if you plan to bring a guest when she does her monthly call ins so we can plan accordingly.
Workshop 25 August 2019
Workshop is fast approaching and we hope that all Gadsden members are able to attend! Workshop will be held at the Conference Room at the Gadsden Inn and Suites starting at 9 AM. The address is 200 Albert Rains Blvd. Gadsden, AL 35901. We will follow up with dinner at Top 'o The River for fellowship and recreation with members from out of the area. If you haven't already made your reservations, please contact Becky Potter to let her know you plan to attend. We would also like to say a special thanks to Amanda Carson at the Etowah Board of Tourism for donating grab bags for all of our out of town guest who are coming in that weekend!
Vendors! Vendors! Vendors!
Our 2nd Annual Home, Garden, and Design Show and 1st Annual Santa's Workshop are also soon approaching and we need all members helping to make sure both of these go off with even greater success than last years! Here are the ways that you can help:
1) Know of someone who would be interested in becoming a vendor? Please get with Angela Walker or Scott Browning with their contact information so that they can send them a contract. Remember that each show is uniquely different. Our Home, Garden, and Design show is focused primarily on just that: home, garden and design. AC and heating, landscaping, interior design, and things to that nature. Our Santa's Workshop will focus primarily on merchants who will have product on hand that day. Jewelry, clothing, and things to that nature. Candy Cane Lane (which is a part of Santa's Workshop) will split the shows and be reserved for vendors who offer unique treats to visitors.
2) Know of someone who would like to be a sponsor? This year we will have an area set up for sponsors to hang posters or sandwich boards that promote their businesses but will be unable to have a person at the event. Space is limited for this area so please act quickly!
3) Tell your friends to come join us! Both shows will be held at the Venue at Coosa Landing on 01-02 November 2019. Last year we had over 1,500 visitors through the door! This year, we want to double that! So get the word out, share our website, let people know what we are doing and why they should come. Remember, all ticket sales go back into the community.
Also, please remember, this will be a working weekend for all members, so be sure to clear your calendar starting 31 October 2019. We will also need some strong men to work as porters for that Thursday to help our vendors unload and then Saturday evening to help load. Let us all work together to make another great show this year!
I am Scott Browning and I am the newest member of Altrusa International of Gadsden, however, I have been a volunteer of theirs for a while now. I became a member because I wanted to do something to give back to my community. I look forward to what I can contribute to the club my many talents and time.